Janeli Saucedo-Castrejana is the Director of Development at the San Antonio AIDS Foundation. She recently went public with her HIV status and is committed to being a vocal advocate in the fight against HIV/AIDS and the stigma that many face as a result of the disease.
Janeli was born in El Paso and raised mostly in DeSoto, Janeli came to San Antonio in 2007 to attend Our Lady of the Lake University, where she earned a degree in Communication Arts and met her husband with whom she has three children.
Prior to her current position with the San Antonio AIDS Foundation, Janeli served as Public Relations and Event Director with WREN Publicity, Special Events Coordinator for Texas A&M University-San Antonio, Membership Services Coordinator at Black Tie San Antonio and an Account Executive for InHouse Public Relations.
Janeli was aware throughout their entire courtship, that her college sweetheart was HIV-positive. The two had planned to break the mold and be a ‘mixed status’ couple.
Janeli has been living with HIV since 2010, after she and her college sweetheart, tied the knot the same year. The couple took every necessary precaution but became exceptional in ways they hadn’t planned when their protective measures failed.
Although she was a college educated woman, who believed her sexual education and knowledge was up to date, Janeli didn’t know that she should’ve gone straight to the hospital the night of “Breakgate” to receive post-exposure prophylaxis treatment to prevent the virus from spreading.
Janeli and her husband both have their condition under control with medication, doctor visit, and testing. The couple’s three children are HIV-negative. Janeli’s goal is for her husband and children to live happy and healthy lives. She is determined to be an old, happy lady, not dying of HIV or AIDS.
Her goal is to help educate anyone and everyone about HIV, sex positivity, and empowerment. Janeli’s story has been featured online in the Rivard Report, Daily Mail, and Latina Magazine.
The San Antonio AIDS Foundation’s mission is to prevent the spread of HIV and provide comprehensive services to individuals affected by HIV/AIDS. The organization offers services such as free HIV/STD testing, HIV/STD prevention education, an onsite walk-in clinic and pharmacy, Medical and social case management and much more. For more information on the San Antonio AIDS Foundation, visit www.SanAntonioAIDS.org.
Thank you Janeli for sharing your story, and for your work in raising awareness in the community about HIV/AIDS!